Most Interesting Theatrical Synopsis

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Salon magazine reviews an underground, possibly illegal, play staged in New York, entitled “I’m Going to Kill the President.” The plot, which sounds quite fun, is this (quoted from Salon):

The plot, such as it is, centers around Skip, a revolutionary who’s bereaved after his girlfriend, Bess, handcuffs herself to a Southern senator and sets off a suicide bomb in a posh Washington restaurant. (When he objects, she cries, “Don’t go Gandhi on me now!”) He’s played by an amazingly quick, dolefully funny actor whose name, like everyone else’s in the show, is redacted in the program.

Dejected and on the lam, Skip meets NYU student Fifi at an Identity Fair, where she’s shopping for a new persona. Alternately sarcastic and bubbleheaded, she coos, “I’ve never met a real revolutionary before,” to which he responds, “Well, it’s a word used only in advertising, and even then incorrectly.”

Soon, she’s signed on to his plan to kidnap the president, igniting so much chaos in the country that the United Nations, also known as the Superfriends, will be forced to intervene and install a “puppet democracy,” as it has in various other nations troubled by “corrupt regimes” and “screwy elections.”

Skip and Fifi set off on an insurrectionary picaresque, meeting a violent, armless veteran of Gulf War I, a group of activists driven to sectarian meltdown by the challenges of ordering a pizza, Fifi’s “edgy, arty” ex-boyfriend, and Ralph Nader. They are dogged by a feral green sleeping bag that attacks the politically uncommitted, turning them into reactionary zombies, and by the Man, who tries to steal Fifi’s heart with fantasies of bourgeois comfort.

Threaded throughout are all kinds of genius low-tech gags and humor that alternates between bleak deadpan and manic physical comedy. There’s a tour-de-force three-way phone call between a cop, the dean of NYU and the head of Homeland Security in which BANG plays all the parts and, toward the end, a repeat of an early scene entirely in French. Like the bastard child of Valerie Solanas and Mel Brooks, BANG combines an astonishing talent for fleet-footed physical humor and rapid-fire repartee with a kamikaze downtown nihilism.

I think it’s the feral green sleeping bag that grabs my imagination.

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